CARE homes across west Cheshire are now free of Covid-19 infections as almost all residents have been vaccinated.

Infection prevention and control experts at the Cheshire and Wirral Partnership NHS Foundation Trust have revealed there are no current outbreaks in the borough’s care homes.

Mass vaccinations of residents and staff have taken place in recent weeks, with the latest figures showing 99 per cent of those living in care homes have had their jabs.

Now health leaders have welcomed the news care homes are Covid-free as the re-introduction of visits from a single loved one begins with the easing of lockdown.

Cheshire West and Chester Council’s director of public health, Ian Ashworth, said: “This is really positive news for our borough and a testament to the hard work that has been carried out throughout the pandemic to keep our care home residents safe.

“It will undoubtedly bring comfort to the families of those residents in the borough’s care homes.

“Throughout the pandemic, we have worked alongside our NHS partners to support our residents. This good news is due in no small part to the commitment, dedication and professionalism of everyone who works in care homes in our borough.

"Their devotion to the people in their care and their willingness to go the extra mile means that some of the most vulnerable people in our borough are now safer. We would like to thank everyone for their efforts.”

But while celebrating the positive news, Mr Ashworth urged people to remain vigilant and prevent the virus from returning.

He added: “As welcome as this news is, it is no cause for complacency. We have seen in the past how persistent Covid-19 can be.

"We cannot afford to risk undoing all this good work and we must continue to do all we can to prevent the further spread of the virus.”